‘Shadow House’ a new addition to a circa 1900 cottage in Bayswater, Perth, that gracefully recedes into the background.
The home is the work of Grotto Studio, who restored the original house and designed a dynamic extension containing a new living domain, atrium, and a separate studio.
The designers tackled the original four-room house first, retaining the entire 62 square metre structure, but reconfiguring rooms to accommodate an en suite and walk-in wardrobe. ‘The entire original cottage was preserved and restored to its original condition,’ says Craig Nener, director of Grotto Studio.
A rear asbestos annex was removed, making way for the new 98 square metre addition, where the living room, dining area, and kitchen lies. This expansive living area extends southwest to northeast, capturing changing light throughout the day.
A new atrium to the south of the property separates the living domain from a new studio. The atrium itself is airy and calm — inviting a moment of pause before entering the backyard — while the studio is dark and cocooning. The studio’s focused outlook towards an intimate enclosed garden is Craig’s favourite area of the home.
A liberal use of timber throughout Shadow House visually defines each space, from shou sugi ban made from reclaimed jarrah cladding on the exterior; raw jarrah in the atrium; walnut stained plywood in the studio; and raw acacia birch plywood in the living area.
‘I’m most proud of the concept’s success in that the entire house feels so dynamic with several differing atmospheres of materiality and natural light,’ says Craig.
The striking colour of the exterior jarrah is also reflected in the new bathroom, which features dramatic ochre tiles, and a direct opening to the outdoors.
The project has saved and enriched the 120-year-old cottage, allowing the home to endure for another 100 years and beyond.